Last night on the Comedy Central late night shows, both Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert were thoroughly unimpressed with GOP front-runner Mitt Romney’s attempts to woo Southern voters.
On "The Daily Show," Stewart took a jab at Romney’s "Southern-fried pandering," the name he gave to the candidates' attempts at relating to voters down there. His campaign strategies in the Deep South could seem a little tone-deaf: Things like greeting them with “Morning, y’all!” and talking about biscuits and cheesy grits had Stewart in a face-palm of embarrassment.
"You're a guy that looks like you just stepped off the Monopoly board," Stewart addressed Romney. "You really think you're going to appeal to Southerners by finding reference with them on the issues that matter most to them -- their accent and choosing the right breakfast starch?"
Everything Romney knows, said Stewart, seemed to come from a Jeff Foxworthy routine. Which somehow made sense when he revealed that the comedian best known for his "You Might Be a Redneck" routine was stumping for Romney in the South. He tried showing a clip of Foxworthy speaking to the hosts of "Fox & Friends," but the feed -- Foxworthy's on Fox, that is -- went out.
So Stewart stepped in by donning a mustache and riffing on Foxworthy's routine: "If you have a car on your front lawn because your garage only holds five cars.... If you go to the diner and order your eggs Faberge.... If you think 'Cloverfield' was a movie about your butler, you might be a Romney!"
On "The Colbert Report," Colbert’s Southern roots (and twang and parasol to protect from the sun) came out a bit as he explained that the GOP "gentlemen callers" have to woo him and his fellow Southerners if they want to win the primaries.
He also made fun of the Foxworthy-Romney connection, and had his own Foxworthy riff to share: "Now, if you're a multimillionaire entertainer supporting the candidacy of a wealthy financier from Massachusetts, you might no longer be a redneck."
Romney's use of "y'all" and speeches about grits might not be enough to make him a redneck, though; Colbert said that "becoming a Southerner is a lot like puberty: Your voice changes" and, well, certain bodily regions "secede from the North."
But Newt Gingrich gets it, Colbert insisted. Gingrich explained he knew the various ways grits are served to an adoring crowd.
"Uh-oh," said Colbert. "Newt has thrown the chitterlings down. But I'm sure Mitt will pick them up because he's not sure chitterlings are hog intestines."
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